Friday, October 22, 2010


What follows is a strange amalgam of old and new links. It's a frankenstein roundup, stitched together over the past four days from aborted link posts that were accidentally unposted... until now. "IT'S ALIVE!"

/Film Jon Hamm as Superman?
Movie|Line's failed/jokey photoshop attempt at the same thing utterly delights me (pictured left)
I Just Want to Be Perfect Black Swan website devoted to Nina's (Natalie Portman) psyche.
Cinema Blend a look at the newly announced cast of The Hobbit. With pics. Why do I feel that this movie is going to be such a disaster when I love the LotR trilogy? I guess I've lost faith in Peter Jackson given that the beauty of King Kong was smothered by a lack of self-editing and then we got the disastrous The Lovely Bones.

ONTD Rachel McAdams and Michael Sheen. I must have slept through this pairing. This is news to me.
Cinematical Pixar gives its first female director the book (Brenda Chapman was to helm The Brave previously due out in 2012...but you know, I assume this could delay the movie). Boo.
Montages (in Norwegian) a look at what's coming up very soon in Norwegian film. The writer is most excited for The King of  Bastøy starring Stellan Skarsgard, Kristoffer Joner and Benjamin Helstad. The film takes place in 1915 and is based on a true story about a youth prison. Hmmm. Could it be next year's Oscar submission? It's never too early to start thinking about that given that the Oscar eligibility calendar is already in the 2011 film year now when it comes to Best Foreign Language Film.

(Partially) Off Cinema
Tiger Beatdown "No One is Ever On Your Side" excellent, excellent article on Mad Men's Betty Draper Francis. A must read for fans of the show in case you missed it.
Benefit of the Doubt on Metroid, feminism and the Aliens franchise (if you're curious as to why that's suddenly in the air again, it's due to the box set's release Alien Anthology.)
Moby Lives on literature's problems in reflecting our internet ruled new world: timeliness or timelessness?
The Faster Times a list of all the new shows coming to Broadway in the spring.
The Oatmeal How to Pet a Cat. Hee

Something That's Really Bothering Me
Did you read the NY Times piece about the shortage of memorable lines in the movies these days? I suppose it's only helping them that everyone has been talking about the piece and linking to it (like me) for a couple of days but I do not understand the response. I've only read a couple of "in response" articles but they seemed to join in the lament. The article cites 90s films like Terminator 2, Forrest Gump and Jerry Maguire as among the last mammoth 'quotables.' Some response articles are saying things like "yeah, it's sad that movies aren't literate anymore..." I'm sorry but Forrest F'in Gump and Jerry Maguire are not literate movies. They just had fun simple catchphrases. Why are people equating catchphrase-making with great screenwriting and extrapolating that into a lament for the state of modern cinema? Does that mean that Arnold Schwarzenegger movies deserved Best Screenplay Oscars?  A lack of catchphrases does not a poor screenplay make. The article makes a vague statement indicating that these things can take time,  citing "Plastics" from The Graduate as a line that percolated before boiling. But then it blames The Social Network for not having a great lines (um, excuse me? It has hundreds of great lines... it'll just take awhile for a few  of them to rise to the top) Meanwhile The Big Lebowski is praised for "The Dude abides." Listen. The Coen Bros write great dialogue. But I was around in 1998 when The Big Lebowski premiered. It was received with pockets of enthusiasm (as their pictures usually are) but mostly a shrug, and some considered it a small setback after Fargo (which had been nearly as popular as Raising Arizona, their first mainstream breakthrough. Lebowski wasn't.) It was only years later after obsessive fandom had successfully added several fresh coats of "classic" paint on Lebowski that people were incessantly quoting its dialogue and acting like it was this huge hit and of the best films of the 90s.

The article does suddenly remember that "I drink your milkshake" (There Will Be Blood) permeated pop culture but completely forgets about "I wish I knew how to quit you" (Brokeback Mountain) which was quoted just about as often as movie lines ever get quoted. And then there are any number of lines from Mean Girls (Best Shot subject this week!) as reader Dom pointed out a few days ago. You or someone you know quotes that movie every day. I know, right. 

I guarantee you that "milkshake" and "quit you"will never disappear. And that 5 years from now, some line from The Social Network will still be in the public vernacular. One day people might not even remember where they first heard the line they end up using from The Social Network it may dig so deep down into the bone marrow of everyday conversation. You think everyone who has ever said "fasten your seatbelts. It's going to be a bumpy night" was thinking of All About Eve (or had even seen All About Eve) when they first said it?


chris na Taraja said...

Honestly I heard "I can't quit you!" many more times than "I drink your milkshake." But I have heard...

"my milkshake brings all the boys to the yard,
and they're life is better than yours.
Damn right, it's better than yours.
I can teach you, but I have to charge."

...even more than both of them.

jbaker475 said...

Anyone who thinks that movies don't have great lines anymore needs to be strapped to a chair and made to watch "In the Loop." That'll shut 'em up.

Danielle said...

Here's a link for you:


Liz said...

Oh man, I am so happy to see Sutton Foster attached to "Anything Goes." Love her and love that show, but with "Shrek" and "Young Frankenstein" and whatnot, I was concerned that she was heading toward being the Nicolas Cage of Broadway, only appearing in high-priced crap.

James T said...

"How to Pet a Cat" was brilliant!!

Cats are c-a-razy!! And all in the same way :p

Ryan said...

Jon Hamm as Superman?!? HELL YEA!

although it wouldn't hold a candle to "Don Draper" in the smolderingly sexy department ;)

Andreas said...

Call me naive, but when I read that article, I could not believe that such fluffy, pointless filler was on the front page of the NYT Arts section.

It says virtually nothing, and is just an excuse to fill space by trotting out the same old AFI rankings we've seen a thousand times. UGH.

My favorite part might be Eric Roth criticizing Sorkin's screenplay for not being "sophomoric" enough. What's that supposed to be mean? It's not as simple-minded as Gump/Button?

anna said...

I read about Rachel McAdams and Michael Sheen a couple of weeks ago or so and was delighted. Love them both. :)

Also, thanks for using that picture of Aidan Turner, that man is delicious! Have you seen "Being Human"? I didn't like the second series quite as much as the first, but I still can't wait for the start of the third one.

vg21 said...

What happened to the Catherine Deneuve post? I was going to comment on it when it disappeared :(.

Arkaan said...

I dunno, but I've been saying "lawyer up, asshole" repeatedly since I saw The Social Network.

Arkaan said...


The second season of Being Human was AWESOME. It took about half the first season for the recasting to really work and I didn't care for the ending of either seasons, but the last three episodes of the second season pack a brilliantly visceral punch.

Glenn Dunks said...

Maybe what the article means is that the movies aimed at men aren't as quotable? That's certainly true since action movies these days aren't quote machines like the Stallone/Schwarzenegger/etc films of the '80s and '90s.

Middle-P said...

I was gonna say this the other day but I truly believe mean girls has the most/best quotes of any movie of the past 20 friends and I routinely go off on quote battles from that movie and we are always thinking up new lines...and I can't even tell you how many times I have told someone I was trying to lose 3 pounds and had them in turn tell me oh my god, you're so skinny!

/3rtfu11 said...

Michael (Paul Sheldon) Patrick King is set to direct Meryl Streep, Sandra Bullock and Oprah in a movie he has written for Universal according to


/3rtfull - god. meryl SO needs to step away from the middlebrow mainstream stuff and let a director challenge her again. come on, woman. I know you have another ADAPTATION in ya.

Ryan T. said...

Nat, if you haven't seen BEING HUMAN, listen to Anna and Arkaan. It's just wonderfully brilliant. When I first saw it, I actually said out loud, "Did Joss Whedon move to Britain to create and write this show?" And with 14 episodes TOTAL for the 1st and 2nd seasons, it's a breeze to catch up.

Oh and that whole "movies don't have memorable lines anymore" is, simply put, a load of shit.

Rose said...

I was kinda wondering what happened to the Deneuve post as well : / I saw it, but didn't get to read it. Then when I came back it was gone. I always get excited about Deneuve posts.

/3rtfu11 said...

Quentin Tarantino is the auteur I believably conceive of standing his ground with Streep. I’m curious of the untimely death of his editor will make him write something deeply personal. Thinking about the emotionalism in the latter half[s] of Kill Bill Vol. II and Jackie Brown.

Streep is, too accustom to being accustom, to having others fawn and bow. How does one remove their self from that when they believe they’ve worked damn hard to earn it? She doesn’t seem at all humble. There’s no questioning her sincerity when she’s genuinely moved by another actor’s performance by I suspect she still puts on a performance for the populist of the biz.

Poppy said...

I'm pretty sure at this point in her career and life MERYL FUCKIN' STREEP can do whatever movie she wants!


Poppy -- I'm pretty sure she can do. But wouldn't it be so awesome if she worked with directors that deserved her. I dunno. I guess When actors have A+ talent I always want them to work with the A+ auteurs instead of with interchangeable directors.


Liz -- yeah, Sutton has been disappointing to the say the least in that regard. She had the chance to be one of the rare bankable young Broadway superstars and instead she keeps singing up for things that will make plenty of bank but don't even remotely need her to do so. not really the way to make yourself an "essential" star. I wish she had some of Audra McDonald's fervor in promoting new composers.

Anna & Arkaan -- here's where I say "i don't get it" about BEING HUMAN. I like supernatural stuff (on TV at least) and i have seen both season but I just absolutely don't think it's good. The internal logic never makes any sense to me, the stakes never seem high at all (given the entire concept and limited cast), but mostly it feels extremely repetitive as if each hour doesn't exist and then the next week's is kinda the same. I don't get it. But i'm glad people like it because i understand loving supernatural serials (see BUFFY)

KTibbs617 said...

This is one of my pet peeves. Mis-quoting a film and having no understanding of the context of the quote. Mostly because people quote films they haven't seen.
The worst is hearing someone saying "I'm ready for my closeup Mr. DeVille". And they're not trying to be funny. But because, they think that's the quote - but 99/100 times they wouldn't be able to tell you that it's from Sunset Blvd. Yikes. It's horrible.
My entire life I've watched my father correct people when quoting 'Gone With The Wind' and 'Casablanca" incorrectly.

Dominique said...

Have you seen these, Nat?

Three cheers for poster makers who think outside the box!


dom -- yeah, i linked to them elsewhere last week. i guess they're still popping up on various websites. but yes, love them.

Eva Moos said...

OMG yes, the "How to pet a cat" comic was one of his best lately!! Awesome. And very true!!

Volvagia said...

Agreed on In the Loop. "'Within your purview?' What do you think this is, some Regency costume drama? This is a goverment department, not a bleeping Jane bleeping Austen novel." And he's right. All aspects considered, In the Loop is a Thackeray.